Monthly Archives: April 2021

Marching On

 So, did you hear that the Christian life was easy and a bed of roses? Yep, me neither! And I don’t read it anywhere in scripture either. So what motivates us to keep marching on, pressing  forward, to have perseverance and persistence?  Is it the amazing grace of Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, or having an intimate relationship with Holy Spirit? Maybe it’s being a friend of God (can we really fathom that), the gift of salvation, and eternity. Or perhaps it’s that personal relationship with our Creator that satisfies us like nothing else can and living our life with purpose. Perhaps it’s all the above, and God’s promises, plus more?

   Paul, one who certainly suffered much for the sake of following Jesus, ran with passion to know Jesus, his goal was to be like Jesus, and to reach the purpose Jesus Christ called him to fulfill. What an example for us in not letting anything get us off track. Keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus helps us in challenging times.

   I’m certain we all have things we could offer as reason to no stay put or be distracted by. The world’s gone crazy; COVID counts are going up and the stock market down; the governments’ running amuck; the Egyptian army is behind us – the sea is before us; there are giants in the land. We are good with our reasoning and Satan likes to go on a rampage when things are difficult and giving us more reasons. When we take time to be still and listen to the gentle voice of God, can we hear him say, it’s okay – trust Me – march on.

    When the Israelites were to cross the Jordon, the waters didn’t part beforehand as when they crossed the Red Sea. Hmm, sounds like they may have had a good reason to not continue moving on into the Promised Land. However, this time the water parted once the souls of the priests’ feet, who were bearing the ark, rested in the water. They had to march on, press forward into something they had not done before, before they saw the way through.

      2 Samuel 5, recounts the story of Philistines going to search for King David. David inquired of the Lord on what he should do and was successful. When the Philistines came again David didn’t just go out to fight figuring he knew what the Lord would say; David again inquired of the Lord. This time the Lord had a different strategy for David to follow; there was success as he followed the plans.

   When we face an enemy or difficult situation, we, like David, need to inquire of the Lord to know His plans, strategies, wisdom, and proper timing, so that we can persevere, stay strong, move forward, and have success.

…live your life empowered by God’s free-flowing grace, which is your true strength,

 found in the anointing of Jesus and your union with him! 2 Timothy 2:1 TPT  

Raise the Bar

   Raise the bar and set it high. If we have a low expectation for our Christian walk we might easily achieve it but deny ourselves what could have been.

   Apostle Paul said his goal was to know Christ, to be like Christ, and to be all Christ had in mind for him to be. Paul makes several claims in Philippians 3 (TPT).

   v9 “My passion is to be consumed with him…”

   v10 “I continually long to know the wonders of Jesus more fully and to experience the overflowing power of his resurrection working in me.

   v12“I admit that I haven’t yet acquired the absolute fullness that I’m pursuing but I run with passion into his abundance so that I may reach the purpose for which Christ Jesus laid hold of me to make me his own”.

   God knit us together in our mother’s womb. When someone knits it’s with a purpose in mind, maybe it will be booties or a blanket to snuggle in. They pick the type of yarn, the colors, and the pattern depending on who it’s for and the purpose of the creation.

   Likewise, when God knit us together he picked certain traits and features, added abilities and gifting’s, certain likes, and motivations.  Can you just picture God picking out your 23 pairs of chromosomes and 10,000 plus genes that make you unique? He then lovingly knit them all together into a person called you.He did it with a purpose in mind.

   Paul didn’t depend on his own strength to accomplish fulfilling his purpose or discovering what it was; it came from time with God. Paul couldn’t go to the library to check out a book titled DISCOVERING PAUL’S PURPOSE FOR DUMMY’S and neither can we. We only get if from one source, our Creator, He alone holds the blueprint for our life.

   Paul further states “I have one compelling focus: I forget all of the past as I fasten my heart to the future instead”.

   Paul didn’t literally forget his past, but he turned his back on his old way of life to face the future. He left behind things that would take his focus away from Jesus or keep him from his purpose.

   Like Paul, in Jesus, we have a new future. Yet our past was not in vain; it is now our testimony of God’s grace for what He has done. God can use the bad in our past for good in our future.

   Consider Paul, he called himself a chief of sinners, and he went on to write a good chunk of the New Testament.

   If your like Paul saying, I haven’t yet acquired the absolute fullness that I’m pursuing but I want to run with passion into God’s abundance so that I may reach the purpose that he has called me to fulfill and I want to discover it…  is a good time to begin that discovery.

   Let’s raise the bar of our expectation.